Pakistan started their ICC Cricket World Cup 2019 on a disastrous note when they were bowled out for 105 by the West Indies in Trent Bridge. Facing up to the hostile pacers of the Windies, Pakistan struggled to cope and they suffered a seven-wicket loss and with plenty of overs to spare in their opening game of the tournament. However, Sarfaraz Ahmed’s side, or for that matter, any Pakistan side have always been mercurial on the global stage. If they have a bad match, then they have a tendency to bounce back in the next game. This is what happened in their next encounter against England at the same venue.
Mohammad Hafeez, Babar Azam and Sarfaraz Ahmed hammered the fifties and despite centuries from Joe Root and Jos Buttler, England lost the match by 14 runs. Heading into the third game against Pakistan in Bristol, the match is in danger of being abandoned as persistent rain threatens to wash the game away. Potentially, Pakistan will end up with three points from three games, having lost one, won one and with one game heading towards a no-result as of now.
However, their start in 2019 is eerily coincidental to the start they got in the 1992 World Cup held in Australia and New Zealand. In their first match against the West Indies, they were hammered by 10 wickets but they bounced back with a win against Zimbabwe by 53 runs. In their next game against England in Adelaide, their game was declared a no-result.
Pakistan went on to lose their next two games against India and South Africa but they staged a spectacular revival to win against Australia, Sri Lanka and New Zealand to enter the semi-final and win the title in spectacular style by beating England. If one has to go by the trend in 2019 if it is similar to 1992, Pakistan is expected to lose against Australia and India before staging a revival against South Africa.
So for India fans, there is nothing to despair as Pakistan’s winless run is expected to continue against Virat Kohli’s side. For Pakistan fans, there might be some hope that Sarfaraz Ahmed’s side can repeat the 1992 success in 2019. The start is similar. Believe it.